The artsy side of ASL: dancing and doodling

Eighth grader Julia Laxer performs in Covent Garden at a photoshoot. She has been trained in classical ballet, along with jazz, contemporary and lyrical. She has also won numerous awards such as the Judges Award at Starpower National Talent Competition. (Photo courtesy of the Laxer family)

The middle school is filled with students with a variety of  artistic talents. Their talents range from dancing, to singing, to drawing and more. Eighth-grader Julia Laxer and seventh-grader Parker Forgash are two of those students.

Julia Laxer is a competitive dancer. She is trained in classical ballet, jazz, lyrical and contemporary, and has won awards such as 1st overall and the Judges Award at Starpower National Talent Competition. Starpower is an American based dance competition that holds competitions around the world. One of the challenges Laxer faces is how time consuming it is as she trains six days a week and has trained with dance schools such as Extreme Dance London, Chelsea Ballet School and Boston Ballet School.

Laxer’s motivation for dancing isn’t the many awards she has won, “There is something about moving to music and getting it just right, when everything flows beautifully and even when you see other dancers, there’s something about it that just makes me so attracted to it.”

Laxer also enjoys dance because it is, “a way to learn so much about yourself and that it opens so many doors for you.”

A challenge Laxer faces is “keeping your inspiration going. By doing as much dance as I do, even though I love it, you can get burnt out or uninspired. So, I just need to remind myself why I am doing this and why I love dance.”

Drawing and doodling is Parker Forgash’s special talent. He loves to create giant doodles based off of one singular idea. Doodling is a way to take his mind off what else is going on in his life. “It’s like a stress reliever, like if I’m really stressed about something I could just take a break for while and make something new.”

These two students are a great example of how art and performance has impacted their lives. Artistic hobbies such as these are a great way to meet new people and learn more about yourself and what you like to do. Finding a new interest will further your creativity and give you an opportunity to de-stress from school.

People who have never danced before might wonder whether it’s something they should try.  “Even if you just want to try it out because your friends are doing it or because it’s a good exercise, I would just go for it because there is really no downside,” Laxer said. “You get to learn so much and it opens up so many doors.”

Through dance, Laxer got to go to Boston Ballet school for two summers and met so many new people through that.

Forgash believes that anyone thinking of starting to draw should “just go for it, because a doodle can be anything. It doesn’t have to be perfect.”

Sign up for a dance class, pick up a pencil and try something new.

About Selma Hansen ('23)

Arts Editor (2018-19)

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